Bhopal: The Samajwadi Party (SP) which
humbled the Congress in recent Uttar Pradesh Assembly polls by
cornering majority of the Muslim votes, has offered an olive
branch to the minority community in Madhya Pradesh by
nominating Choudhary Munawwar Saleem of Vidisha to the Rajya
Sabha from the neighbouring state.
"Certainly, it was courageous of SP President Mulayam
Singh Yadav, as by doing so he has made an effort to attract
the Muslim community towards it in Madhya Pradesh," senior
Congress leader and former Union Minister, Aslam Sher
"He could have easily accommodated any Muslim leader from
Uttar Pradesh in the Rajya Sabha, but by taking this step (of
nominating Saleem), the SP has made an effort to woo the
minority community towards it," Khan, who is also a former
hockey Olympian said.
When asked whether the decision of the Congress not to
send any Muslim candidate to the Rajya Sabha from Madhya
Pradesh has annoyed the community here, Khan said the
fundamental problem with the minority community here is that
it has no leadership in the state.
Secondly, Congress has to seriously think on an important
issue that earlier nearly 70 percent Muslims voted for the
party but due to lack of any viable alternative. Now, this
percentage is declining to 40-45 per cent in the elections.
The Congress has to give more representation to the
community in the assembly elections, which normally votes
enbloc for the party, to assuage its feelings and for ensuring
that the BJP won`t come to power for the third time in a row
in Madhya Pradesh.
However, the lone Muslim MLA from Congress in the Madhya
Pradesh Assembly, Arif Aqueel said the SP will hardly get any
benefit by this move as it has no foundation in the state.